Marketing Automation: more than meets the eye
By Leah Carew
Going by its name alone, you’d think that Marketing Automation is the panacea for harried marketers’ lives. You buy the software and, voila, you’ve got yourself an efficient, clever solution for all your marketing woes. If only it were that simple.
Success in Marketing Automation demands that you look beyond the remit of the marketing department. And it means thinking critically about what can and should be automated. It’s not just a matter of switching on automated email and SMS programs.
The best Marketing Automation platforms go much deeper than email and SMS. These platforms can transform how you do business.
Blue sky thinking is needed
To fully harness the power of Marketing Automation, you need to think big!
Being a technology platform, it’s hard not to dive straight into operational tactics when planning Marketing Automation. After all, in most cases, the C-Suite has invested in the platform as part of a ‘digital transformation’ agenda and wants to see results, fast.
Yet, if you think beyond mere tactics and technology, you’ll reach the place where you can really reap results from Marketing Automation.
A good place to kickstart this thinking is in transforming experiences.
We like to ask our clients a simple question: “If you had unlimited resources and the funds to provide the best customer experiences at every interaction point possible, what would you do? What would you do if they were unhappy with their purchase? How would you help them if they were trying to understand your product?”
The answers rarely reflect current experiences and processes – which is why simply automating what you’ve already got is one of the least effective things you can do with Marketing Automation.
Change is possible
Without Marketing Automation, your actions are limited by the resources at hand, and often stymied by entrenched processes.
Marketing Automation makes change possible. Profiling tools make it easier to execute on ideal responses based on behaviour and first and third party customer data. They put the customer behaviour and information at the centre, forcing you to think in terms of actions and reactions. For example:
If person does X, we do Y
If X happens, we do Y for Z customers
What if they do something completely unexpected?
Using these smarts, the real silver bullet of Marketing Automation is scale. And with scale you can transform your business.
Transformational Marketing Automation in action
Together with Scandinavian Airlines, Wunderman has used Marketing Automation to transform passenger experiences in Denmark. The airline was asked, “What is the best possible response to an unplanned event?” Armed with their answers, they are addressing, at scale, problem experiences.
For example, using Adobe Campaign, the team has automated SMS comms to ease the pain of lost luggage. Suddenly, passengers are not left standing at an emptying conveyer belt waiting for luggage that won’t arrive – instead, they receive an SMS as soon as they land explaining the error and next steps.
This lost luggage SMS wasn’t a part of Scandinavian Airlines’ previous marketing strategy. If they had simply moved their existing programs across to a Marketing Automation platform, fantastic customer experience strategies like this may not have got off the ground.
In Australia, Wunderman work closely with the Microsoft Partner team to transform how they communicate with partners, from educating them on new products to increasing their sales capability. The current program uses Marketo’s flexible behavioural tracking to monitor content engagement and respond with the appropriate messages.
We have ambitious plans to add sophistication to this program so that it can become a true concierge service for new and existing partners. We want to surpass—or, at the very least, match—the expertise and support provided via offline channels like the call centre; yet at scale and with added efficiencies. As insights and learnings grow, we’re redefining the processes used to manage the expansive Partner Network.
As these examples show, to extract maximum value from any Marketing Automation program, you need to embrace the ‘blue sky’ thinking. Go beyond what you do now and consider what you could do in the future to make the customer experience as positive as can be.
To learn more, contact us today.